I’ve always wondered about this.
When someone sees you squeezing yourself through a narrow gap, why do they tell you to ‘Breathe in’?
If you do so, your lungs fill with air and from what I know about the way balloons work, this expands your chest, making you bigger, not smaller – and therefore less, rather than more, likely to get wherever you want to go.
Call me old-fashioned, but wouldn’t it make more sense to tell you to breathe out?
After all, in one of those lateral thinking puzzles, it’s letting the pressure out of a truck’s tyres which allows it to pass under a bridge which is otherwise slightly too low.
Now, until I raised this subject, it’s pretty unlikely that you were aware you were breathing.
We both know you are, though.
(If you’re not, I’m talking to myself.)
Respiration is one of those essential things you generally do without thinking, but perhaps there’s sense in making yourself rather more conscious of it now and then?
Really deep breaths feed your brain and body with vital oxygen, and breathing out expels carbon dioxide.
That’s a pretty neat trick.
Who knew you could turn one gas into the other so quickly and effortlessly?
Anyway, taking more mindful deep breaths can also be a smart way to imagine yourself taking in goodness, and getting rid of badness by breathing out again.
So breathe in through your nose, breathe out through your mouth, deliberately filling and emptying your lungs while you tell your worries where to go.
(To avoid strange looks, probably best to do this last one under your breath, though.)
Try to take the time to breathe consciously today.